Something is fundamentally wrong with global public health. More accurately, something is fundamentally wrong with the mindset of global health professionals, particularly those in positions of leadership. It has become normal to speak, repeat, and defend complete absurdity, as if illusions and fantasies are real. There are no sanctions for operating in this way – indeed it is proving highly successful. Statements of demonstrable stupidity are becoming prerequisites for career advancement and the approval of peers. It is like living within a fantasy, except those it kills are real.
The world at large struggles to understand that they could be fed falsehoods on this level. Most people still consider the experts quoted in the media to be credible, serious people. They believe that those leading the health professions would not habitually lie. For professionals to act like this, they would have to be deeply troubled, insecure people, or they would have to be quite malevolent. This does not fit the popular image of global health experts.
Beyond individuals, we now have entire institutions mocking reality. They lie to each other and the public, repeat these lies, and applaud each other for doing so. They can state obvious stupidity with impunity as a once critical media now sees its role as backing them unquestioningly, disseminating their pronouncements and suppressing any information to the contrary for a perceived public good. The emperor’s obvious nakedness has become proof that he is clothed. Acknowledging the evidence of one’s eyes as he parades his wares is tantamount to the crime of Galileo and must be treated accordingly.